23 Shadows – The Hills, evening
The going is slow as the group encounters bad weather, freezing rain and snow hound the group up into the mountains. They reach the camp about twilight, a small shack, with a donkey pen. Private Mary Green scouts ahead to check the place out. There is no smoke coming from the chimney, and the remains of two mules in the pen. They appear to have been torn apart by animals.
Damien and Lady Hawthorne inspect the house, finding it quiet. Gunn watches them from the outside. Inside they find the frozen corpse of one of the miners. Something ate out the right side of his chest. Outside Wythri heats up coffee.
Quion comes in to investigate, with Cici in tow. The bite marks are what killed him, and something continued to eat him as he bled out. There are no signs of a struggle. He determines that this is the brother of the boy found down in the town. He finds supplies and food in the shack, and takes samples of each, though most of them are unopened. Tucked under the mattress where the body is Quion finds a journal.
Outside Hawthorne splits the group in half, Gunn and Private Green go left, while Hawthorne and Damien go right. Private Alan Husher stays with Wythri outside the house.
Gunn and Green investigate the animal pen for animal, or other, tracks.
Wythri casts a sight-spell to see dark magic. She suddenly cries out, spins around, and falls over, babbling incoherently in Elvish. Hawthorne comes running back as Husher and Quion yell for her. She snaps Wythri out of her babbling and finds out that the entire area is awash in dark magic.
The journal describes how Rock died, then came back, and acted normal. The journal ends after that. They put the body in the pen with mules and start a fire in the shack.
Dark has fallen.
The group decides that resting for the night is the better course of the action.
The frozen rain starts up again, the shack is windy, though the fire provides some warmth. On the second watch Damien and Green hear something knocking and scraping at the door. Hawthorne gets everyone ready, and opens the door.
A tree branch is scraping against the side of the house. Hawthorne stalks out to cut the branch off the tree, annoyed at being woken up. Green goes out with her, and the dead man they threw out into the animal pen earlier is stalking out of the dark. It lunges at a very alert Private Green and misses.
Hawthorne attacks the creature, but misses. It retreats into the darkness, and charges out. Hawthorne barely sees it coming, but doesn’t roll out of the way in time and is bitten hard on the shoulder, stunned and wounded. Damien comes out of the shack and stabs the zombie in the upper body. Private Green lunges at the creature, but does no connect in the frenzy of movement and darkness. Gunn comes out of the shack and casts a Rebuke Undead Spell, and he brings a lantern with him. Inside, Quion casts a nightvision spell and Wythri a defensive spell.
Hawthorne recovers from the attack. Wythri moves to the doorway and casts an Armor Spell on her. Damien slashes at the creature again and hits it in the stomach. Green slashes and hits it in the leg to little effect. Husher comes out and takes up a defensive stance next to Wythri. Gunn stabs the ghoul with a spear and hits it in the stomach. The creature continues to claw and chew on Hawthorne, she is barely hanging onto consciousness. Another creature attacks Wythri from the roof, but misses as she falls back into the shack. Husher turns and stabs at the ghoul, but misses. Hawthorne draws upon her faith and casts forth her own Rebuke Undead, to great effect. Wythri calls forth a green soul-fire spell, tossing into the new ghoul’s chest, blowing it back nearly ten feet. The monsters flee into the darkness, and head for the mine. Damien chases them and watches them dive into the mine.
While the part rests, Quion pulls out the journal and puts together a map. About a week before Little D got sick they had suck a new shaft, pumped water out of it, and started the new tunnel.
21 Shadows – Foxtown
Tunnelmouse and Candor are patrolling the Silver District, the see a light on in the sages house. Tunnelmouse sneaks up and peaks inside a window, inside he sees a candle lit. He recognizes the man inside, and is pretty sure it’s the missing sage. Candor goes and knocks on the door to talk to Sage Adams. He claims to have just returned from being out of town, and reports his books, personal notes, stolen. He claims to have been out of town several days, but has taken his horse.
Candor casts a Detect Magic spell, and detects a powerful magic surrounding the sage. He thinks this is still 17 Shadows, Candor takes him back to the station to question him further and find out what’s going on. Tunnelmouse keeps an eye for blood leaking out of the Sage, and quietly look him over. As they walk, both officers notice he is limping, though he is covered in heavy clothes, not unusual for the time of year.
Candor brings the sage to a room to talk to him, and keeps him distracted while Tunnelmouse runs out to find another cop. He finds Noah and James to let them know Sage Adams has been found. They all return to HQ.
While waiting for the others to return, Candor attempts to cast a Dispel Magic. It fails, she attempts to keep him calm. He stomps out the door just as Lt. O’Derry arrives onsite. James tries to distract him while Candor relays the information gained to Niamh. He refuses to cooperate, and Niamh tells him that the police have the books and they are part of a murder investigation. Niamh finally threatens to place him under arrest as a suspect in the attack, if he doesn’t cooperate in questioning. Niamh wants to examine his leg, he is refusing.
He attempts to leave, by forcing his way past Niamh who places him under arrest. Tunnlemouse knocks him down. Candor attempts to confuse him with a Perplex Spell, but it has no effect despite being successful. Adams using magic to knock Niamh out. James strikes him in the arm, to no effect.
Tunnelmouse strikes Adams in the arm again. Candor casts a Flash Spell to blind him for a short period. Adams reaches out and strikes James with a Drain Life Spell, nearly killing him. Niamh stabs Adams with her spear in the foot. James backs away a few steps and throws up an Officer Down Flare. Benji joins the fray and smashes Adams with his sword, but misses his swing.
Tunnelmouse delivers another blow with his truncheon to the back of Adams head, to little effect. Candor casts a Wizard Arrow at Adam’s hand, putting a hole in it. Will and Uri see James’ flare. Adams’ casts a spell that opens the ground and drops into it, the ground closes around him.
Niamh gets a horse to go to Greyhaven. Tunnelmouse goes to wake the captain. Candor helps get James to the Church. Will goes to lock down the city blowing his whistle to wake more officers, and are told he has escaped to the sewers. Uri and Will head for the Sewer outflow.